Cold Case Wiki
Al Clarkson 1981
Al in 1981
Al Clarkson 2003
Al in 2003
Al Clarkson
Portrayed by Dylan Cope (1981)
Doug Kruse (2003)
Episode Love Conquers Al
Status Alive

Al Clarkson was the boyfriend of Paige Pratt. Paige was murdered in 1981 and Al was convicted of the crime two years later. He was finally released in 2003 after new evidence exonerated him.


Al wasn't popular with Paige's friends because he was 21 and had a reputation for being bad-tempered and possessive. Al would later say he was upset because he was certain Paige was interested in someone else. He confronted her about it at Paige's last track meet on May 15, 1981, but she simply brushed him off.

Al didn't know the boy Paige was interested in and slept with was Bennett Cahill, another track star from Crespi High School's main rival, Jefferson High School.

Paige was found murdered a month later on a bridge near the Schuylkill River on the night of June 20. The authorities quickly focused in on Al as the prime suspect. Besides his reputation, his gold chain was found at the scene, as were tracks matching the tires on his car. Al was eventually arrested. He wasn't able to offer much defense and his lawyer, Rudy Tanner, whom Al would later describe as a "strip-mall hack", was no help. Al was convicted of murder in 1983 and sentenced to life in prison.

22 years later, a petty crook named Ricky Stockvis told police that he'd seen a student, Will Harrell, cleaning blood out of his car the night of Paige's murder. Detectives Lilly Rush and Scotty Valens questioned Al about his relationship with Paige and about Will. Al didn't know Will and didn't have much to offer, except that he was certain Paige had been seeing someone.

Though Will ultimately was found to be innocent as well, the investigation soon led to Bennett and his girlfriend, Jane. Bennet and Jane confessed to having lured Paige to the Schuylkill River and killed her in a twisted attempt to rekindle their relationship. They were arrested and Al was freed soon after.

Despite his name being a prominent part of the title, Al doesn't really play a big part in the episode and appears in just two scenes.